• HAL Lab Members


    Researchers from the Humans and Autonomy Lab.

  • Robotics Student Symposium


    High School students from the Triangle area participated in the symposium and some displayed robots that they built for competitions.

  • Humans Assisting UAV Hacking Detection

    Researchers in HAL recently demonstrated that humans can successfully aid unmanned aerial vehicles, aka drones, in detecting when they are under a cyber attack.

  • HAL in Gabon

    Ted, Raya, Andrew, and Missy with the ecoguards in Rèserve de Wonga Wonguè during the Drone in Gabon trip. The head of the ecoguards, David (front and center), was gracious enough to allow the HAL team to spend 5 days in Rèserve de Wonga Wonguè to test our drone conservation system.

  • Bringing Technology to Real Users

    The Mobile Operations Command Center (MOC) allows HAL researchers the ability to conduct field experiments with every day people and commercial, off-the-shelf drones, and other fielded robotic systems.

  • Streamlining Interactions in High Speed Rail Operations

    As more advanced forms of automation are used in rail operations, the nature of work for engineers has changed with the increased information. HAL studies these complex environments to determine how to include advanced technologies without overwhelming operators.

  • Drones Are Everywhere

    HAL is a leading research lab in human interaction with unmanned aerial systems, a.k.a. drones. Projects include human workload and performance modeling, staffing predictions, decision support display design and testing, drone systems engineering and policy analysis. Learn more about HAL.

  • The Limits of Algorithms and Safety

    Scheduling and resource allocation algorithms are an inherent part of any complex system with multiple moving vehicles and embedded automation, like on aircraft carriers. We're researching how humans can work collaboratively with such algorithms for enhanced system performance and developing safety protocol simulations to flag problems.

Researching the Interactions of Human and Computer Decision-Making


Overview of current research in the Humans and Autonomy Lab, located in the new state-of-the-art Duke Robotics Facility.

Research in Duke University's Humans and Autonomy Lab (HAL*) focuses on the multifaceted interactions of human and computer decision-making in complex sociotechnical systems with embedded autonomy. 

Given the explosion of autonomous technology in aviation, medicine, and even in everyday mundane environments like driving, the need for humans as supervisors of and collaborators in complex autonomous control systems has replaced the need for humans in direct manual control. 

Instead of relying on humans for well-rehearsed skill execution and rule following that requires significant practice and memorization (and subject to problems such as fatigue and boredom), autonomous systems need humans for their more abstract levels of knowledge synthesis, judgment, and reasoning. Autonomous systems today, and even more so in the future, require coordination and teamwork for mutual support between humans and machines for both improved system safety and performance. 

Learn more about the Humans and Autonomy Lab

The Humans and Autonomy wants to know how YOU feel about drones. Please take 5 minutes and fill out the anonymous survey at the link below.


*HAL was previously known as the Humans and Automation Laboratory at MIT and was moved to Duke University in the Fall of 2013. See http://web.mit.edu/aeroastro/labs/halab/index.shtml for archival information about HAL 1.0.